The time has come: public participation in science policy making.

Video: USA launch of World Wide Views on Biodiversity from CNSCSPO on Vimeo.

About two years ago, Science Cheerleader and our sister site, SciStarter, partnered up with the Woodrow Wilson Center for Scholars, Boston Museum of Science, Arizona State University and the Loka Institute to form the first-of-its-kind U.S. network we named ECAST: Expert and Citizen Assessment of Science and Technology. Our mission: to support better-informed governmental and societal decisions on complex issues involving science and technology by involving the public. ECAST is now a national network of nonpartisan policy research institutions, universities, and science centers working together to conduct balanced technology assessments. (You can learn more about the evolution of ECAST here.) Earlier this month, at the Koshland Science Museum in Washington, D.C., we kicked off our first pilot project to begin to demonstrate how public participation can better inform science policy making in the U.S.
Download the printed program distributed at the event, here:
WWV_DC_Launch_Program
View video of event presentations here:
WWViews on Biodiversity Launch Part 1: http://vimeo.com/43841119
WWViews on Biodiversity Launch Part 2: http://vimeo.com/43848348

The pilot project is tied to the World Wide Views on Biodiversity project: a distributed, agile, collaborative, and non-partisan 21st century approach that integrates citizen participation, deliberation, expertise, and assessment into government policy making, management, research, development, informal education, and dissemination at national and international levels. ECAST will lead this effort in the USA.

On Saturday September 15th, 2012, groups of one hundred ordinary citizens in Washington, Boston, Denver and Phoenix will join similar groups across the globe to learn about biodiversity issues, discuss important policy choices, make up their minds, and express their views. The citizen meetings will start at dawn in the Pacific and continue until dusk in the Americas. All meetings will have the same agenda and use the same approach in order to make results comparable and useful for policymakers who will gather the following month in India to discuss future measures for preserving biological diversity.

The results will be disseminated to the United Nations, Congress and government as well as non-governmental agencies. We will also create an online, open toolkit to share information about our resources, methodologies and evaluations so other organizations interested in modeling this approach can do so.

Learn more about partnering with ECAST on the USA World Wide Views on Biodiversity. There’s still time to add sites and expand the reach!

And, here’s your chance! Sign up to participate in this first-of-its-kind event at one of the following host sites!
Koshland Science Museum (Washington, DC)
Museum of Science (Boston, MA)
Colorado School of Mines (Golden, CO)
Arizona State University (Tempe, AZ)

WWViews USA Alliance partners are: Arizona Science Center; Colorado School of Mines; Consortium for Science, Policy and Outcomes at Arizona State University; Denver Botanical Garden; Koshland Science Museum; Loka Institute; Museum of Science Boston; Science & Technology Innovation Program at Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars; Science and Technology in Society Program at Virginia Tech; Science Cheerleader; Science, Technology and Society Initiative at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst; and SciStarter.